It is possible to learn how to stay happy. People, however, tend to do the exact opposite. They make conditions such as „If X is going to happen, I am going to be happy”. Doing so they actually shut down the possibility of real happiness by waiting for it to come.
Perhaps you're one of those people who have a vision of what would have to happen for them to feel joy. Well, actually, you should totally forget about it. If you can’t be happy now, it is very unlikely that anything from the outside world will bring happiness into your life. And even if it happens, it would only be a very short-lived and shallow feeling.
Have you ever heard such statements as: "as soon as I have a new car, I'll be happy," "as soon as I will find my other half, I'll be happy," "as soon as I get paid x money, I'll be happy," "as soon as ...". The vast majority of people determine their happiness by external factors. And this is a big mistake, because even when some expectations like those are met, most of the time it turns out that they don’t really bring joy; or a person finds additional 5 conditions which are missing for them to be happy. Some people have so many conditions in their minds that they’ll never feel happy! If you cannot be happy here and now, no material thing will make you happy. But you can learn how to feel good, regardless of what you’re still missing in your life.
I strongly believe that everyone has enough resources to feel truly happy, regardless of their dreams or plans for the future. You see, if you are able to find happiness deep down inside you, it will be a lot easier for you to achieve your goals. Most people have this vision in their head - success first, happiness later. And it works the other way round! Learn how to be happy and your life will change completely.
The feeling of gratitude is one of the most important things in finding happiness in yourself. You can do this every day before going to bed. Spend 5 minutes on a very simple exercise - the list of gratitude. All you have to do is sit comfortably and in a quiet environment, and for five minutes list in your head everything you are grateful for.
Why is this exercise worthwhile?
1. It encourages you to focus on the positives in your life. You start to enjoy things you have never even acknowledged before. You stop looking for what’s wrong or what you didn’t succeed in. You’ll begin to see and appreciate what is positive. This will have a huge impact on your overall well-being during the day. In addition, change the way you think about certain events in your life, it will be the beginning of a greater change.
2. You stop worrying about trifles. You will remember what is really important, it will be difficult to worry about your momentary lack of money when you will be grateful that you have a job and a roof over your head. When you argue with your loved one be thankful for the fact that you even have such person. It's hard to stress about the lack of motivation and energy when you are thankful for the fact that you are healthy. Likewise, you'll worry about the disease less, when you'll be thankful for being alive.
3. It reminds you that you should thank other people. Exactly as important it is to say thank you to yourself, it is significant to say thank you to your nearest and dearest. In this case, both parties will feel much better. Both them and yourself. People love to be appreciated. And when you consciously appreciate yourself, you make yourself feel happier.
What can you be grateful for?
For everything. For the fact that the sun is shining today, for your health, for interesting conversation at the bus stop, for a good day at work,for a loving family, for a good friend, for having dreams, for the fact that you learned something new, for a mere smile of another person, for a compliment that someone told you today, for the fact of having ambitions and plans for life, for the fact that today you are going to the cinema to see a good movie? For the fact that you have an incredible and wonderful opportunity to be a part of this world.
How do you make a daily gratitude list?
- Let it really be a daily list. It is only 5 minutes and makes a huge difference. The effects can be seen after a few days, so it is worth a try.
- Thank for everything that comes to your mind. Even a seemingly small and insignificant stuff. You will see that in time you will find more and more reasons to be grateful. This will be the best sign that you begin to see more and more positives in your life.
- Feel grateful for real. Think calmly "thank you" and experience how does it feel to be thankful for something. Do not just quickly list all the items in your head, I don’t want you to just tick those things off your list. Above all, stop for a moment and feel good. Once you learn to feel true gratitude you’ll see that it is a strong, great feeling. Remember this point, because the real feeling of gratitude is what it’s all about.
- Do this exercise in the morning or in the evening. It is important to be able to find a moment of peace and relaxation. First look at the all the events of the current or the previous day, finding what you're grateful for. Then head on to the more general things such as family, friends, hobbies, plans. Note also the small things.
- Learn to thank for the negative things as well. Find something good in each and every one of them. Even if something happened to you, where you didn’t necessarily see anything to be grateful for, try to see the good sides.
I know that at the beginning some people may feel a little strange when doing this exercise. However, remember that you have nothing to lose - it's only 5 minutes a day! This exercise will teach you a lot, change your way of looking at things and it will induce a very valuable emotion in you. You feel it snapping to the next level. In the long run, it will change your life very much. So give yourself a chance and start being grateful today :)